Soul food has been around long before the term became modernized. Most of these recipes can be traced back to before slavery when meals were prepared with limited rations. The term soul food originated in the mid 1960s when the word “soul” was a common word used to describe African American culture. This ethnic cuisine was traditionally prepared and eaten by African Americans in southern states, but today, it’s eaten everywhere.
Soul food is offered all over the country and is now part of mainstream American food culture. It usually consists of chicken, ribs, cornbread, and greens. One place in Madison that offers this delicious style of food is Marie’s Soul Food located at 1637 Monroe Street.
Owner Marissa Holmes opened Marie’s Soul Food in July 2019. It started as a simple idea and soon became a reality. Marissa’s significant other always raved about her cooking and knew that she was starting to get bored with her 9-5 job. That was when he suggested the idea of opening Marie’s Soul Food.
The process of opening a business is hard work and things don’t always go as planned. Marissa admits “I honestly went into this not really knowing what I was doing or what I expected from Marie’s, I just knew failure wasn’t an option.” Opening this restaurant was a chance to better her and her family’s future, so she went for it. When thinking of a name for the restaurant, Marissa chose Marie’s because that’s her middle name.
Prior to Covid-19, business was great for Marie’s Soul Food. Marissa still worked her normal 9-5 along with the restaurant. The restaurant used to be open until
11pm but Marissa soon realized that the neighborhood shut down around 8pm so she changed the closing time to 9 pm. At the end of 2019, after being open for five months, Marrisa realized she couldn’t work her day job and run Marie’s so she made the decision to quit and put all her energy into Marie’s.
Thankfully, Covid has not negatively affected Marie’s. The biggest change is that all orders are taken over the phone. Marissa explains how that can be stressful, but it’s great to know that business is still strong. Madison has supported her so much and she’s forever grateful for that.
If you’re looking for amazing food and a local business to support, Marie’s Soul Food is your spot. It is open Thurs.- Sat. 2-7 and Sun. 2-6 and is located at 1637 Monroe St. Remember, all orders must be called in: (608) 405-5729. Visit Marie’s Soul Food website for the menu and more.